Precognitive Search

February 17, 2009

Charles Hudson’s “The Database of Intentions Is More Valuable than the Database of Musings for Now (Google and Twitter)” is an interesting article. The notion of putting Google at one end of a spectrum and Twitter at another intrigues me. You can find the write up here. A number of buzzwords have been pushed off the cliff in an effort to capture the shift from historical search to real time search. For example, there was the word attention as used in the phrase “the attention economy”. Then there was the word “conversation” to describe Web log posts and the ripostes that would appear in the comments section. With the publication of Buyology: Truth and Lies about Why We Buy by Martin Lindstrom, a clever bit of word play, provides via brain scans that people make decisions without conscious thought. The closest the average Web user will get to this type of precognitive thinking is by running a query on http://search.twitter.com. Certain entities of various governments have somewhat similar functions, but those are not available to anyone with a Web browser. Twitter.com is a public stream of brief comments. Mr. Hudson’s tackles this notion, and he offers some excellent observations. If you are interested in the future of real time search, read his essay. He doesn’t provide context for some of his assertions, but he does make the spectrum clear and sets the stage for additional thinking about these services.

Stephen Arnold, February 17, 2009

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